Azerbaijan International

Autumn 2000 (8.3)
Page 99

SOCAR Section

To fully exploit the new opportunities in the Caspian region, the Norwegian state oil company Statoil has decided to establish Baku as the hub for its regional activities, elevating the Statoil Azerbaijan office to be a Statoil Caspian Region office with full responsibility for all of the company's activities in the Caspian region. Statoil intends to open an office in Kazakhstan to further strengthen the company's presence in the Caspian region.

Since the Caspian is an important core area for Statoil, the company has also begun discussions with SOCAR hoping to obtain an operatorship in Azerbaijan. Statoil is eager to pursue a leading role in the development of the Azerbaijani gas industry.

Statoil's support for the Main Export Pipeline-and willingness to enter the sponsor group for the oil export pipeline - is further evidence of Statoil's commitment to the oil and gas developments in Azerbaijan. The company is working with BP, SOCAR and the Shah Daniz Partners on preparation for gas export to Georgia and Turkey. Statoil is confident that it will be possible to realize a fast-track development of the Shah Daniz project. Statoil's recent alliance with the Turkish Koc group is a result of Statoil's belief that Azerbaijani gas will reach the Turkish markets. Statoil and Koc will jointly seek to secure a role for Shah Daniz gas in Turkey. To further strengthen the marketing efforts, Statoil has opened a gas marketing office in Ankara, Turkey.

Statoil arrived in Baku in 1992 shortly after the collapse of the Soviet Union. They were among the first international oil companies to express their interest in Azerbaijan. Its participation in regional oil and gas projects includes an 8.56 percent stake in AIOC's project in the Caspian Sea, a 25.5 percent in the Shah Daniz gas field consortium and a 15 percent stake in the Alov prospect all projects operated by BP . Work on these fields could bring Statoil's investment in the Caspian Sea region to an annual $375 million.

Since January 1999, Statoil's office has been located in the Landmark building. Presently, the company has 45 employees based in Baku, of whom 70 percent are Azerbaijanis. This number is expected to increase as a result of the new responsibilities.


Azerbaijan International (8.3) Autumn 2000.
© Azerbaijan International 2000. All rights reserved.

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